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May 17, 2007 | Comments ()


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De Plane, De Plane. De MotherPajibing Plane

The Daily Trade Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Trade News | May 17, 2007 | Comments ()


I’ve finally figured out the “big” secret of “Lost.” I now fully understand where the plot is going, and I don’t want to completely spoil it for you all, but it’s really the only thing that makes sense at this point. On the final episode, Ricardo Montalban is going to walk out, Tattoo at his side, and announce that the entire series has been one extended episode of “Fantasy Island.” C’mon: Doesn’t it make sense? Fantasy Island, after all, was a mysterious island in the Pacific (somewhere near Hawaii, where “Lost” is filmed), where people paid money to live out their greatest fantasies — Hurley paid for the whole thing with his lottery winnings, see? Only in this case, it’s like “Fantasy Island,” crossed with David Fincher’s The Game — the folks on the island won’t know they are living out their fantasies until the end. Like in “Fantasy Island,” several “guests” have died, but they were scheduled to die anyway — they just got to live out their fantasies first.

I just blew your minds, didn’t I?

Oh — not so much, eh? Well, how about this: Hollywood is remaking “Fantasy Island,” as a big-screen feature, starring Eddie Murphy — who, in addition to playing Mr. Roarke, will play a series of other characters as well. And to absolutely ensure that it will be a laugh riot, Murphy has brought in Jay Scherick and David Rom, the writers of Norbit to pen the script. Isn’t that awesome? Aren’t you all stoked? Eddie Murphy playing multiple characters in a remake of a classic TV show. How can that possibly fail? It’s genius. Murphy is the best comedian working today, and when he takes on multiple roles in the same film, the funny-o’-meter kicks into high gear and makes a little counter-clockwise motion that rips the fabric of the universe and makes high-pitched noises that only dogs and small children can hear before rasping out a final phlegmatic gasp of laughter and croaking. And that’s just in the first five minutes! I can’t wait!

Please God, give me the strength to cross this river.

I probably should be ashamed of this, but I have scant knowledge of the Tintin comics, this despite the fact that Mrs. Pajiba-hyphenate owns 22 of the 23 issues (all but the really offensive one) and there is even a giant Tintin poster (Le Lotus bleu) that currently adorns my bedroom wall. But, since I don’t read comic books for moral reasons (I’m terrified of geek hell), I have no idea what to think of the fact that Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson are lined up to direct the first two of a trilogy of Tintin flicks. I assume, given my wife’s admiration of the comic, that neither will do it justice, but — personal biases aside — both directors are quite adept with visual effects, and they plan to use some sort of motion-capture technology to create digital renderings of performances by live actors — some sort of live action/digital animation hybrid (actual quote from Mrs. P: “It’s going to look like some dumb 60’s film, like Pete’s Dragon.”). The comic book, written by the Belgian author, Herge, is about a teenage reporter with boy-scout morality who goes on Indy-type adventures with his intrepid dog, Snowy — I don’t know exactly what those adventures entail, but apparently, there is a lot of fun wordplay and puns involved and, if it’s adapted from one of the earlier comic books, quite a bit of the racism that reflected the colonial attitude of Belgium at the time. (Herge apparently redeemed himself later in life, tossing stock characters aside in favor of well-researched characters from foreign lands, starting with Le Lotus blue. ) I’m afraid that’s all I can say about it, however, for fear that geek Satan might be reading over my shoulder. (Please, put away the light-saber pitchfork, Mr. Geek-Devil man.)

On DVD this week, there’s The Fountain, which nary a person saw in theaters, as well as Stomp the Yard, a less-than-mediocre feature with some of the best choreography you’ll ever witness. But, the only release that really matters is Pan’s Labyrinth. If you haven’t seen it yet, do yourself the favor of adding it to your Netflix queue, and when it asks, “Would you like to move it to the top of your queue,” go ahead and say yes. You won’t be disappointed.

In the trailer watch, I officially give up on Luke Wilson. After Bottle Rocket, I never thought it possible that I could ever come to dislike Anthony. I cringed at Home Fries, but a pair of O.R. scrubs (“O R they?”) bought him a new lifeline. And then Legally Blonde, and then Alex and Emma, and then Charlie’s Angels and The Third Wheel. Sure, there was Old School and Idiocracy in between, but then again, there was also Vacancy. So, I’m like: Who is the real Luke Wilson? A solid straight-man in the occasional decent comedy? Or one of the worst romantic-comedy leading men, ever? I think Blonde Ambition answers the question. You star opposite Jessica Simpson, you lose all respect. Jessica Simpson? What the fuck, man? You’re no better than Dane Cook or Johnny Knoxville now. Ben Stiller wouldn’t even stoop that low. I hope Wes Anderson yanks your ability to periodically redeem yourself in his films, because you no longer deserve it. Damn.



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